Court judgement on employment status (Roamler)

In 2019, an online-micro-worker filed a lawsuit against the crowdworking platform Roamler. Roamler had terminated the collaboration with the worker without further notice. The crowdworker took the claim to court in collaboration with the union of metal workers (IG Metall) arguing that he should not be seen as self-employed since he relied on the platform for gaining his income to a large extent (he had gained 60 percent of his earnings via Roamler). After losing the dispute at first instance at the Regional Labour Court in Munich, the National Labour Court ruled that the worker had to be qualified as an employee. The court argued that the platform made use of elements of gamification, through which it secured the attachment of workers. This system operates through the perpetual provision of spontaneous offers for micro-jobs. In this way, the tasks workers fulfil are determined by the platform, since it dictates the location, time and content of work. This court ruling marked the first time a crowdworker was classified as employee by a German court. 

Metadata

  • Court ruling, Initiative
  • Arbitration
  • Germany
  • Employee organisation, Platform, Worker
  • Yes
  • no specific sector focus
  • Online moderately skilled click work
  • Roamler
  • algorithm, employment status
  • 2021
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